I have a player who is currently an afflicted lycanthrope, meaning he has contracted the curse of lycanthropy. He wants to eventually become undead (specifically, a mummy) and I know undead are immune to disease, but as lycanthropy is considered a contracted curse and not a contracted disease I am wondering if his lycanthrope template would remain or fall off.


So by the rules, lycanthropy is neither a curse nor a disease; it’s a template. The “curse of lycanthropy” is really a curse that causes you to gain the template—the point being, once the template is applied, the curse isn’t really a part of the equation. Similarly, for all lycanthropy spreads “like” a disease, it isn’t one. This is why the curing lycanthropy section needs all these special rules for handling it—it isn’t your standard curse or disease. The spells break enchantment, heal, remove curse, and remove disease don’t normally do anything to a template, hence that section.

The section does not, however, address immunity. The template itself kind-of addresses the concern when creating a lycanthrope in the first place:

“Lycanthrope” is a template that can be added to any humanoid or giant (referred to hereafter as the base creature).

But templates are not removed if the creature would later become ineligible to receive them (indeed, many templates make changes to the creature that would invalidate themselves, so it would be a problem if they did). So while an undead creature is not allowed to become a lycanthrope (they have the undead type, not the humanoid or giant type), a lycanthrope could become undead—and nowhere is this mentioned as ending the lycanthropy.

Now, in your world, you could reasonably rule that lycanthropy is enough “like a disease” to not apply to the undead, or that it is otherwise incompatible with lycanthropy. But you could also very justifiably rule the opposite way, and that ruling is more consistent with the rules, both in their technicalities and also (I would argue) in their spirit.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Nice, but one question. Is there any particular reason why it should or should not be tried? Like balance issues or particular extreme weakness that might hamper the player? \$\endgroup\$
    – Chepelink
    Mar 8 '17 at 18:44
  • 5
    \$\begingroup\$ @Chepelink You mean What are the drawback to a PC becoming a werepenguin/vampire? That should probably be its own question. The answer's pretty serious. \$\endgroup\$ Mar 8 '17 at 18:50
  • \$\begingroup\$ @HeyICanChan Yup... well not a werepenguin/vampire, but close. Sadly I'm not familiar of 3.5 to make a good question (I don't even know if there exist a werepenguin, sooo) Feel free to post it if you wish. \$\endgroup\$
    – Chepelink
    Mar 8 '17 at 18:56
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Chepelink Unfortunately, templates are just about universally broken—and not in PCs’ favor, either. There are a few decent undead templates, but lycanthrope is hideously underpowered for its level adjustment. And unless the type of undead we’re talking about is one of the few good ones, that will only make things worse. In my own games, I ban level adjustment altogether—and not because I have a problem with a werepenguin-vampire character (that would be awesome), but because the rules just don’t work out. Sorry, can’t offer anything more useful. (But, to be clear, werepenguin is a joke.) \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Mar 8 '17 at 19:04
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Chepelink Since it's not an actual problem you're having with your game, the site's loath to entertain mere curiosity… but if you can frame the question such that it's amusing and interesting, even if the system isn't your jam, you might be able to get away with it. Such idle curiosity questions aren't unprecedented. (And a Small PC can totally be a werepenguin; the penguin (Frostburn 166) is carnivorous and within 1 size category of a Small PC. The trouble is finding a natural werepenguin to afflict the Small PC with werepenguinism.) \$\endgroup\$ Mar 8 '17 at 19:11

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